Bad Skin Irritation

Joe_T

Member
Jul 29, 2020
5
Central NY
Hello,
I have had my pool for six years but the last two have been very difficult. My water is giving me almost like a chemical burn. My levels appear fine but something must be off. I use chlorine tabs for now (with CYA) and I have used pretty much the same water for the six years. It looks clear and beautiful but skin is extremely irritated afterwards. My numbers are as follows: pH-7.5
ALK- 117
FC-1
TC-1
CYA-91

I used baking soda and 20 Mule Team borax to get my numbers where they are now.

Please help! I don't want to close early because of this!
 

Oly

Gold Supporter
Jun 28, 2017
1,614
Fresno, CA
Your situation should motivate you to reevaluate your water testing, balance and sanitation program.
How are you testing your water? Test Kits Compared
What is your sanitation program, what do you add and when?
 

Joe_T

Member
Jul 29, 2020
5
Central NY
Welcome to TFP!

Your chlorine is much too low. For 90ppm CYA, your chlorine should never drop below 7ppm and you should try to keep it between 10 and 12 ppm. Check out the. FC/CYA Chart
Thank you for your reply. Can a high CYA and low FC really be the cause of the skin irritation? I saw that high CYA is mostly associated with algae problems but I didn't see that it can cause skin irritation.
 

Joe_T

Member
Jul 29, 2020
5
Central NY
Welcome to TFP!

Your chlorine is much too low. For 90ppm CYA, your chlorine should never drop below 7ppm and you should try to keep it between 10 and 12 ppm. Check out the. FC/CYA Chart
Your situation should motivate you to reevaluate your water testing, balance and sanitation program.
How are you testing your water? Test Kits Compared
What is your sanitation program, what do you add and when?
 

Joe_T

Member
Jul 29, 2020
5
Central NY
My sanitation program consists of HTH chlorine tablets (with Dichlor and Trichlor) and shocking with calcium hypochlorite when/if water gets cloudy or the chlorine gets too low. I use a Taylor K-2004 test kit to get my readings.
 

CrystalRiver

Well-known member
Jun 19, 2020
234
Massachusetts
With a low FC/CYA ratio, the sanitizer can't do its thing. That often leads to algae blooms, which are annoying but not particularly harmful. Importantly, pathogens can also grow - various viruses and bacteria that can make you quite sick. My guess is that's what is causing the skin irritation.
 
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Donldson

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 12, 2009
4,563
NW Ohio
You're attributing the problem to chlorine, but what's causing the problem is something in the water that the chlorine isn't destroying. With the excessively high CYA and low chlorine there isn't enough active chlorine in the water to properly sanitize the water. If you are getting burns, your water isn't safe to be in no matter the clarity.
 
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Joe_T

Member
Jul 29, 2020
5
Central NY
I ran down the chlorine and hopped in the pool today with no issues. I think it is the type of chlorine I am using. I will try some different brands of chlorine and get the numbers within range for my CYA. Hopefully that will do the trick.
 

Donldson

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 12, 2009
4,563
NW Ohio
Sigh...

Chlorine is chlorine. There is no "type" of chlorine. Once it is in the water it's all the same regardless of whatever extras it came with.

If you lowered your FC at that CYA level then your water has zero sanitation to it. That's not safe. You are just ignoring a significant problem, one that is definitely not going away by removing the chlorine in the water. Seriously, you need to correct this problem, not act like closing your eyes will make it go away.